I’ve not really followed WWE since the COVID-19 pandemic lock downs. But I watched some of the Royal Rumble event last weekend, and generally liked what I watched. I looked into some of what’s been happening in the company during the week, and all the focus is what’s going to happen at the biggest show of the year, Wrestlemania 39, which is scheduled to take places on April 1 and 2, 2023.
But I’ve seen a lot of talk online this week about how the one to dethrone Roman Reigns as Undisputed WWE Universal Champion should be Cody Rhodes due to Cody’s overarching story about finally becoming a world champion; or how it should be Sami Zayn due to the “Bloodline” story that’s played out over the last six months or so.
But the problem with all of the arguments that I see is that Wrestlemania 39 isn’t the end of the story, because WWE never stops. And nobody is looking out for what happens next.
So what would I do? Well I’m glad you asked!
Thanks to the reveal of the Elimination Chamber poster, we now know Sami has challenged Roman for the belts at that event. I would have Sami win the Undisputed WWE Universal Championship in front of his hometown of Montreal. Let’s finally break away from then curse of the 1997 Screwjob, and let the fans in Montreal like WWE again. Give Sami a reward for all the work he’s put in over the years, and let him share that moment with his childhood friends and family at home.
Now, because Cody won the Royal Rumble, and his Wrestlemania main event was never guaranteed to be Roman Reigns, but rather whoever the Undisputed WWE Universal Champion hapens to be at Wrestlemania, we all assume the WM39 main event will now be Cody Rhodes vs Sami Zayn.
On the next Raw, Roman invokes a rematch clause against Sami Zayn for night 1 of Wrestlemania. Cody Rhodes will now face the winner of THAT match on night 2.
The end of night 1 is Roman Reigns winning the belts back from Sami Zayn, with interference from The Bloodline. After the match, they attack Sami. Kevin Owens comes out to help, but it’s not enough. Sami is kayfabe injured and written off TV for a little bit.
Cody Rhodes beats Roman on Night 2, maybe with KO and/or an injured Sami stopping the Bloodline from interfering again, and Cody becomes the new Undisputed WWE Universal Champion.
This way, we get the best of both worlds. Sami winning the belts in his hometown is arguably bigger than him winning at Wrestlemania, AND we also get both Sami vs Roman and Roman vs Cody at Mania.
But what happens next?
The next night on Raw, Roman says he wants a rematch for the following Pay-Per-View event. I don’t know the order of all the WWE PPVs are anymore, so whatever the one after Wrestlemania is called now. Or he’s granted a rematch for having held the Universal Championship for 900 days or whatever. Either way, they book that match. Cody retains. Maybe with assistance from KO or Jey Uso. Or maybe Roman loses clean for once — He’s been around for over a decade with a list of accolades that will cement him as one of the greatest of all time. He looks strong by now.
The following week, Gunther comes out and challenges Cody. Gunther has a legitimate gripe, as he entered #1 at the Royal Rumble and went all the way until the end. Meanwhile, Cody was the last entrant, and even THEN, it took Cody over 15 minutes to finally best Gunther. Cody agrees, and gives him a shot at the next PPV, but Rhodes retains. Gunther comes out looking like a legit main eventer. Perhaps he wins the 2024 Rumble and headlines Wrestlemania XL.
The next Raw, Cody is cutting a promo, and Sami Zayn’s music hits. It’s the first time we’ve seen him since Wrestlemania. The crowd goes banana. Sami claims that it should have been the two of them at Wrestlemania, but because of Roman’s rematch clause and the interference of the Bloodline, they never got that chance. But now Sami is back, and he wants to be champion again.
And now we get Cody Rhodes vs Sami Zayn at Summerslam.
I don’t know who wins, or where we go after that. Probably the champion has to deal with the Money in the Bank winner going i to the fall. Maybe Sami wins and Cody gets a rematch. Maybe new championship contenders come up throughout the course of the year. Someone has the equivalent of an “Austin 3:16” moment, and there’s no choice but to insert him into the title picture. Maybe along the way, we can throw Seth Rollins into the mix, too, so he can try to get his revenge on Cody that was “stolen” from him at the Rumble by Logan Paul. Maybe Kevin Owens gets involved at some point.
Maybe one of you has a better story to share in the comments!
Regardless, there are many more options than just “it has to be Sami” or “it has to be Cody.”
Wrestlemania isn’t the end of the story, it’s just the transition between chapters in the book of WWE.